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Maidstone United manager Jay Saunders set to face former boss Chris Kinnear at Margate

By Alex Hoad

Jay Saunders admits it will feel strange going head-to-head with the manager who shaped his career when Maidstone travel to Margate in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

Stones boss Saunders enjoyed his most successful days as a player under ex-United defender Chris Kinnear at Hartsdown Park.

The pair will be in opposite dugouts as Maidstone look to pull off a first qualifying round upset against the Ryman League Premier Division leaders.

Saunders (pictured) said: "It’ll feel strange going up against Chris.

"He gave me the chance to play in the Conference and I had some great times there.

"You try to take the good points from every manager you’ve played under.

"Chris always had a good dressing room and tried to make sure we all got on.

"Organisation was another big thing. We worked a lot on set-pieces and everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing."

Ex-Gate players Shaun Welford and Tommy Osborne are set to line up against their former club.

Another another old boy, keeper Charlie Mitten, may deputise if Deren Ibrahim (hand injury) is not fit.

Saunders insists there is no pressure on his in-form side.

He said: "Margate are top of the Ryman Premier so we go into the game as underdogs."

If a replay is needed, it will be at the Gallagher Stadium on Tuesday night.

Read Friday's Kent Messenger for an exclusive interview with striker Paul Booth. 

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